Do patients who are treated with stem cell transplantation have a health-related quality of life comparable to the general population after 1 year?

M. J. Hjermstad*, H. Holte, S. A. Evensen, P. M. Fayers, S. Kaasa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

65 Citations (Scopus)


Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in leukemia and lymphoma patients treated with high-dose chemotherapy followed by allogeneic (SCT) and autologous (ASCT) stem cell transplantation or receiving combination chemotherapy (CT) was prospectively assessed by the EORTC QLQ-C30 and compared with reference data from a general population sample. One year after transplant, the SCT group had functional scores which were close to population values except for lower social (P < 0.0001) and role function (P = 0.0004). More symptoms and problems were reported, especially appetite loss (P = 0.001) and financial difficulties (P = 0.0001). The ASCT patients reported a less than optimal HRQOL relative to the population 1 year post transplant. Cognitive, physical, role, and social function, dyspnoea, financial difficulties and global quality of life were most impaired (P < 0.001). In the CT group, physical, role and social function, dyspnoea and financial difficulties were impaired 1 year after start of chemotherapy, compared with the general population (P < 0.001). The EORTC QLQ-C30 was supplemented by a high-dose chemotherapy module, the HDC-19, at the 1-year assessment, but no consistent differences mere found across groups. Fifteen to 34% of the patients expressed fears of relapse and worries about future health, while 24-30% indicated no participation in sexual activities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)911-918
Number of pages8
JournalBone Marrow Transplantation
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 1999



  • Health-related quality of life
  • High-dose chemotherapy
  • Reference data
  • Stem cell transplantation
  • Treatment side-effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Transplantation

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